Not a trifling matter 

It is that time of the year again when I invite members of my family around for lunch. This started off as a modest dinner when I used to live around the corner from them and has somehow expanded into lunch. Yes, expanded.

My issue, I think, is that I do not cook enough meals for guests and so when this annual opportunity presents itself, I lose my mind ever so slightly. Mains are OK, I can generally fix upon a dish for a main course and a side dish that will work, but I do love an entree and I also love dessert. The result is a table with a wild variety of much too much food and a house full of guests lying around and groaning for a couple of hours.

I do love an entree and I do love a dessert. Perhaps what I should do is just remove the main course altogether and host a meal like the restaurant in London called menage a trois, or deux I forget.

Normally I spend some time choosing from a list of things I might make and then adding to the list as I potter about the kitchen finding ingredients, up this year will be slightly different. I had to work today and so lost at least 24 hours of pottering time.

This means that when I went to the supermarket my shopping was a little haphazard. I forgot to buy filo pastry for one of the deserts I was planning, but did buy ingredients for about four others. I also bought a lot of cheese. A tremendous amount of cheese. There is always a lot of cheese at my house, but this year there appears to be even more.

I still need to buy bread and some other bits and pieces, but I am underway with preparations. One layer of trifle has been established and I have four more to go. I also need to check my wine stock and work our what pre lunch drinks to serve but I think there will be fewer drinkers this year.

Finally I need to remind my husband where the vacuum cleaner lives and ask him to run it over the floor. This is another annual event of significance, I may even take a photograph.

The meal may be simpler this year, but there will still be enough food for the rest of 2016 once we finish. And there will be plenty of cheese.

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